Horse Blanket Washing 101

horse blanket washing 101

Washing your horse’s blankets can always be a stressful time! We have created an easy to use guide for caring for your winter blankets. If you follow our simple steps, your blankets will come out looking clean, new again, and will last longer which is a big cost savings! Below you will find some very common misconceptions that we have debunked.

DO: Wash your blanket in a mild detergent with ingredients that are made for sensitive skin.

Try Not To: Try not to use fabric softener when washing your blankets: these products can strip the protective waterproof coating that is found on the outside of your horse’s blanket.

DO: Hang your horse’s blanket up to in the fresh air or in a ventilated area to make sure it is completely dry before putting it back on your horse.

DO: Do allow a few hours for your horses blanket to dry. Heavy Blankets will take longer. Putting on a wet or damp blanket on a horse is not recommended. This can lead to skin issues and your horse not having the ability to stay warm on a cold day.

DO: Always wash your blanket at the ends of the season before storing it. Also take a close look on the inside and outside of your horse’s blankets to make sure there are no needed repairs or broken leg straps that need to be replaced. Do these repairs in the spring so if you get an early cold snap next season your horse’s blanket is ready to be used for the colder weather.

DO: Always have a back-up blanket in the same weight so if your horse rips their blanket out in turnout, you have a backup blanket so they can stay warm that evening.

wash horse blankets

Steps to wash and care for your horse blanket in a washing machine: Recommended for lightweight blankets

  1. Remove excess dirt, mud, and hair from your blanket. Take a stiff brush and brush as much excess dirt, mud, hair, and grime as possible.
  2. If your blanket has removable leg straps or buckles blanket’s place them in a mesh wash bag to protect the buckles as well as your washing machine from damage.
  3. Wash your blanket on a delicate cycle with cold water using a mild soap or a reputable rug cleaner (always read manufacturer instructions.)
  4. Optional: Re-proof your blanket to add water repellency solution back into your blanket.
    • Find a reputable rug proofer (follow the manufacturer’s proofing instructions.) Some blanket brands carrier their own line of waterproofing solution.
  5. Air Dry Blankets: Line dry, hang them over a fence, and lay them out in the sun.

How to clean a horse blanket outside: Recommended for heavy-weight blankets!

  1. Remove excess dust, dirt, and built-up hair from the exterior with a stiff brush. Make sure to go in circular motions and be careful to avoid damaging the waterproof surface
  2. Hose off the remaining dirt with cold water to remove any remaining debris.
  3. Scrub the entire blanket using the same stiff brush with gentle laundry detergent or special horse blanket detergent.
  4. Work in the detergent with circular motions.
  5. Completely rinse the soap from the blanket by spraying it with cold water from the hose.
  6. Repeat until stains are out as best as possible.
  7. Then air dry your blanket by line, hanging it over a fence, or laying them out in the sun.

Recommended Blanket Cleaning Supplies

Blanketsafe.com has a Wash and Water-Repellent set for $45. With this, you will be getting a blanket wash and a water-repellent spray. You can spray on your blankets to help boost that water-repellent coating!


Schneider’s Saddlery also has a Blanket Care Kit! Normally retailed at $29.99, it’s currently on sale for $24.99. This set comes with your choice of blanket repair tape, Schneider’s Blanket Wash, Schneider’s Odor Eliminator, and an pack of 8 bands to secure your t-lock fasteners.


These are just some of the options out there! Contact us for more information and help outfitting your barn.